BMS buys Celgene | Lilly buys Loxo Oncology – Does this Signal a Return to Strong Deal-Making Activities in 2019?

Bristol-Myers Squibb’s blockbuster $74B deal to buy Celgene creates an oncology powerhouse amid industrywide excitement about the rapidly evolving science and explosive growth of the sector. The agreement could signal a return to deal-making for the pharmaceutical industry in the $133B global oncology therapeutics market.

Deaths from cancer dropped 27% over a quarter century, resulting in an estimated 2.6M fewer cancer death during that period due to treatment advances and smoking decline according to a new American Cancer Society studyDr. Richard Wender, Chief Cancer Control Officer at the American Cancer Society will present along 400 speakers at PMWC Silicon Valley January 20-23 – See the Program.

Looking back, 2018 was a banner year for pre-revenue pharma IPO and M&A exits, hitting a record deal value of $49B.

  • Pre-money valuations and dollars raised reached a five-year high.
  • Private M&A posted a 5X median upfront multiple and a median time to exit of just over three years.
  • U.S. healthcare venture fundraising reached a record $9.6B, continuing a four-year upward trend.
  • Venture investment increased 50% over 2017, setting a record, led by cancer drugs companies.

Pharmaceutical companies need more than just good science to compete in the cancer space amid growing price pressure. Being bigger helps in negotiations with payors and pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) who determine reimbursement and coverage.

Overall, 2018 was a relatively quiet year for mega deals in the industry: Takeda’s $62B agreement to buy Shire accounted for about half the total deal value through the first nine months. The reason for the lack of deals was out-of-reach company valuations. But market capitalizations of public biotech companies fell at the end of the year.

Cancer drugs are an attractive area for pharma companies because these drugs command a premium, but don’t require the expensive sales forces needed for other indications. The recent release of positive clinical data by number of companies increased the pool of prime acquisition targets. As a result, analysts expect 2019 to be a very strong M&A year across the board for pharma.

PMWC 2019 Silicon Valley, taking place in just 11 days will cover pharmaceutical market trends, this in addition to many other topics–from the science, regulatory, legal, reimbursement to new health care models.

My team and collaborators worked diligently to bring you this timely conference. Investors, M&A executives, and pharma leaders will not find anything else like it in a single venue. I hope to see you at this timely conference – let’s convene and talk!  See the conference agenda or just send me an email.

Best regards,
Tal Behar
Co-Founder & President
PMWC Silicon Valley – Santa Clara Convention Center – January, 20-23
Celebrating 10 Years of Precision Medicine Innovation

2018 has clearly been a year when significant opportunities intersected with strong partnerships to yield advancements. In particular, the clinical advancements that were realized are a testimony to stakeholders working together to deliver on promises affecting major aspects of precision medicine. These include improving how healthcare is executed, how innovation is helping physicians better diagnose and treat patients, and how drug discovery is being conducted to deliver more efficient translational success.

Be it through AI/machine learning, blockchain technology, CRISPR-Cas9, liquid biopsy, NGS, or cancer immunotherapy, the emerging opportunities and early resulting applications are tremendous, we have:

  • established rare disease diagnosis
  • expedited newborn sick children screening
  • launched large scale population studies
  • transitioned DNA sequencing to become routine clinical care
  • translated immunotherapy discoveries into new therapeutics that, in certain cancer scenarios, are already becoming the new standard of care
  • and on the regulatory side, the FDA has finalized guidance to accelerate the development of reliable,beneficial NGS-based tests

Quick Note: Access Discounted Jan. 20-23 Tickets Here by 12/31 – and visit all the facets of Precision Medicine. The overarching result is that , and this is raising our expectations for even more highly impactful developments in 2019.precision medicine is now part of the common vocabulary in healthcare

  • Genomic Medicine has reached milestones that, until recently, seemed out of reach: Thermo Fisher Scientific, for example, received FDA approval for the first NGS-based companion Dx (Oncomine DX Target Test); 23andMe achieved the go-ahead to offer a health product DNA-test; AstraZeneca’s PARP inhibitor Lynparza was approved for advanced ovarian cancer and metastatic breast cancer; Stanford researches eliminated all traces of cancer, including distant metastasis, by activating T-cells in mice using a cancer vaccine; the Genetic Counseling Medicare bill was introduced.
  • Scientists behind game-changing cancer immunotherapies won Nobel Prize in Medicine. The work of the winners, American James Allison (PMWC Award Honoree) and Japanese Tasuku Honjo led to the creation of a multibillion-dollar market for new cancer medicines.
  • AI/Machine Learning continues to change healthcare. The FDA approved in April the first AI-powered diagnostic device to detect certain diabetes-related eye problems that don’t need a doctor’s help.
  • Innovative Care Models are new catalysts to transforming healthcare.Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JP Morgan Chase are teaming up to form an independent healthcare company for their employees. CVS and Aetna are merging, while Walgreens and LabCorp are partnering.
  • Major acquisitions occurred: Flatiron Health and Foundation Medicine were both acquired by Roche, Genohm and ACEA Biosciences by Agilent, Counsyl by Myriad, and Illumina is in the process of acquiring Pacific Biosciences. All will certainly impact the path to a more established approach of expedited, accurate clinical testing and decision-making.
  • Population studies have gotten bigger: The “Genomics England” initiative reached 100K participants, the “All of Us Research Program” launched, and is inviting all Americans to join its program, the NHS will start screening all cancer patients for mutations, and Finland’s “FinnGen” project aims to match genome information with over 500K blood samples, just to name a few.
  • Other newsworthy events of this year: 23andMe is sharing its 5 million client’s genetic data with drug giant GSK, Oxford Nanopore Technologies mapped the most complete human genome using its MinIon device, and some fed-up hospitals are creating a non-profit generic drug company, Civica Rx, to get some control over the drug supply for patients.

Hear from nearly every one of these organizations at the Precision Medicine World Conference (PMWC), January 20-23rd – See the topics that are at the forefront & who is leading the discussions – PROGRAM.

These developments, while exciting, come with their own consequences and will undoubtedly impact how genomics studies are conducted, how doctors and patients are educated, and will highlight an even bigger need for clarification through regulatory guidelines, and for changes in reimbursement policies.

Be among the first to hear where the field is moving, what  will look like, and how it will . PMWC, January 20-23 has secured a great lineup of 400 speakers and representatives from CMS (Seema Verma), UPenn (Carl June), MIT/Broad Institute (Feng Zhang), Illumina (Francis de Souza), Regeneron (George Yancopoulos), NIH (Eric Dishman), UCSF, Stanford, Google AI, Myriad, Pacific Biosciences, GSK, Thermo Fisher Scientific, Roche, and many more.the next phaseimpact you and your business or career.

“Not only do I see this as risky, but I am also deeply concerned about the lack of transparency surrounding this trial. All medical advances, gene editing or otherwise and particularly those that impact vulnerable populations, should be cautiously and thoughtfully tested, discussed openly with patients, physicians, scientists, and other community members, and implemented in an equitable way.”

Feng Zhang, Broad Institute – Genome editing tool pioneer for use in eukaryotic cells from natural microbial CRISPR-Cas9 systems | Luminary Awardee and PMWC 2019 SV